The J. Clyde

BA SCORE
96
world-class

42 Reviews
The J. ClydeThe J. Clyde
PLACE INFO

Type: Bar, Eatery

1312 Cobb Ln S
Birmingham, Alabama, 35205-4918
United States

(205) 939-1312 | map
jclyde.com

Notes:
Casks are now tapped on Friday at 4pm; call ahead.

3 Beer Engines.

Added by Poser on 12-08-2007

PLACE STATS
Score:
96
Reviews:
42
Ratings:
67
Avg:
4.39
pDev:
7.29%
 
 
Taps:
60
Bottles/Cans:
200
Cask:
Y
Beer-to-Go:
N
View: Place Reviews | Events
User Reviews
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Reviews: 42 | Ratings: 67
Reviews by Bonhoeffer:
Photo of Bonhoeffer
4.95/5  rDev +12.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

Wow, has it been 3+ years since I updated my Clyde review? Anyway, couple notes people should keep in mind. They got a new central air unit a couple months ago, so the interior temp problems are a thing of the past. Very nice.

Also, they have a new head chef as of very recently. They had some consistency issues with food in the past, but the new chef is working out the kinks. The food is only going to get better, so if you've ever had a bad food experience here, give 'em another try.

----
UPDATE on 7/21/08: Just wanted to mention for anyone who's not a regular at TJC, if you visit anytime between now and next summer you'll see a giant wall of empty taps in the front room, and you may wonder what the deal is. That section of the front only recently underwent a complete remodel including the addition of scores of taps. Jerry is going to leave the taps empty until the 6% limit is lifted, as a protest. Once the law is changed, he's going to fill them with high gravity offerings. I get chills just thinking about it :)

---
ORIGINAL REVIEW on 1/5/08: Glad this finally made it out of the approval queue. It's a long overdue addition to BeerFly.

The J. Clyde opened in Spring of 2007, with the passion and vision of owner Jerry Hartley. He's told me his hope is to eventually rival Decatur, Georgia's Brick Store Pub as the premier beer bar of the South once Alabama's beer laws are reformed by Free The Hops. Jerry is an active member and supporter of FTH, by the way.

Although On Tap's new owners have been doing of great job of expanding that establishment's beer selection, I believe TJC still has the best selection of beer in Alabama. They have a standing order for anything new to be delivered as soon as it hits the distributors' warehouses.

Although he started out with only a handful of taps, he's been working hard to add cooler space for kegs and wall space for tap handles and his draft selection is very impressive right now. His ultimate goal is to have every craft/specialty beer that is available in draft form in Alabama.

Also very notable is that at the time of this review, TJC is the only establishment in Birmingham and only the second place in all of Alabama to offer cask ale (the other is Montgomery Brewing Co). Their first cask offering was Rogue Santa's Private Reserve, which sold out in one night. They continue to work with craft breweries around the country to maintain a supply of cask ales.

Their prices on beer are pretty typical for the area--$4 for many craft beers and higher for things like Samuel Smith's and high end Belgians (of which there aren't many in AL, yet). But every Tuesday and Thursday features half price drafts, which are a steal.

The food is really excellent, in my opinion. I'd take TJC's best entrees over just about any high end restaurant in Birmingham. Fortunately, they've also added their "late night" menu full time, which features cheaper fare like wings and sandwiches. So you can spend as little as $6 on something to snack on with your beer, and as much as the high 20s on a nice dinner entree. Whatever you're in the mood for.

The service is acceptable. Not the best in Birmingham, honestly, but getting good help in the food service industry is a challenge. TJC is still working to establish themselves among Birmingham's long list of high end independent restaurants. I suspect many of the best servers have great gigs at Highland Bar & Grill, Hot & Hot, Daniel George, etc. and wooing them to a newcomer is not easy. But I know Jerry is trying to stay on top of any glitches in service and is working to educate his servers on beer.

Watch college football on the large plasma HDTV during the fall, and enjoy live music most of the rest of the year.

Bottom line, The J. Clyde is actively working to be the best beer bar in Alabama and it will only get better once the 6% and 16 oz limits are lifted on beer in the state. Go here.

 3,921 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of Redrover
4.35/5  rDev -0.9%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

The J Clyde is located on a small one way street, it is easy to spot due to the front patio. I like the black wrought iron encircling the outdoor space.

As you enter, the L shaped bar is to your right and the dining area is off to your left. There are a couple of TVs to catch a game. There is another bar room and another patio in back

The decor is dark and comfortable. Stone on the walls, dark wood bar, tin ceiling, and dark wood plank floors.

Service is friendly and beer savvy. They are easy to discuss options with, are free with recommendations and at least for me, free with samples.

They have an 8 page beer list. It is divided by style (roasty, malty, hops, sour, spice, etc.). I would guess 30 to 40 beers on tap plus a massive bottle list. Note that they seem to have a well-equipped cellar and offer some nice vintage beers.

Not a huge food menu, but my patty melt was top notch, fries were good but a little greasy.

This is a great stop in Birmingham and I can see why it is well beloved by regulars and visitors.

 1,050 characters

Photo of JohnChimpo
4.9/5  rDev +11.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Waitress was skilled in the art of beer recommendation. Knew the local beer as well as style and customer expectation. The food was crazy good. Small menu but real high quality! I love this place!!!

 202 characters

Photo of Hans_Olo
4.09/5  rDev -6.8%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

Photo of atlbravsrno1
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Photo of Hopportunistic
4.66/5  rDev +6.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.75

Photo of AgentMunky
3.84/5  rDev -12.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.25 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

Photo of klittle250
4.73/5  rDev +7.7%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Photo of Keene
4.45/5  rDev +1.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Photo of TheBeard89
4.48/5  rDev +2.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.25

Photo of mecmd
4.66/5  rDev +6.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.75

Photo of brewskifan55
4.46/5  rDev +1.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.25

We were able to get in early and found a good seat (and a glass of El Gordo). Our waiter was really attentive; he even found me a great J. Clyde logo glass to purchase. My wife went nuts over her steak and egg. The chicken fingers are terrific. And the beer selection can't be beat. The patio out back was covered and heated since it was winter. I look forward to coming here again and surfing the draft menu. Wish we had a place like this back home.

 457 characters

Photo of Jenebauer
4.66/5  rDev +6.2%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.5

Photo of Evango
4/5  rDev -8.9%

Photo of JackRWatkins
5/5  rDev +13.9%

the best craft beer selection of any bar or restaurant in bham that I know of, the food is great as well

104 characters

Photo of MOVERTON1284
4.35/5  rDev -0.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 3 | selection: 5 | food: 4.75

Great spot for rare and hard to find beers in Birmingham. It is very dark and kinda dirty, but their selection is incredible. The major downside for me is that they have a single seat bathroom and there is always a line. They take reservations, so it can sometimes be hard to find a table to eat at. The food is great, I have never had anything bad there. The service usually is lackluster, but from time to time you get a good server/bartender. Must visit if you are coming to Bham!

 483 characters

Photo of justinm4bama
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of Vestlake
4.75/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of Big-Daddy
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of watsontiger98
5/5  rDev +13.9%

Photo of KMitch
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

Photo of JuliusPepperwood
5/5  rDev +13.9%

Photo of BeerBucks
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of Justinbshelton
4.85/5  rDev +10.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.75

Photo of elkinbrown
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

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The J. Clyde in Birmingham, AL
4.39 out of 5 based on 67 ratings.
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